Expect sharp forecast this monsoon season

MMRDA to set up 30 rain gauges and nine tides gauges across the city to analyse, collect vital information

In the coming monsoon season, umbaiites can expect a better forecast of rainfall and floods, as the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) is will set up 30 rain gauges and nine tides gauges across Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) to collect and analyse rainfall and tidal data.

The planning authority claims that this will help develop and update a flood forecast programme to analyse flood conditions.

Speaking to Sunday MiD DAY on condition of anonymity, as he was not permitted to speak to the media, an MMRDA official said, "The systematic programme Real Time Flood Forecast (RTFF) would offer a forecast and accurate flood conditions in the region using probability and algorithm calculations based on rain, tide and regional contour conditions."

The official also informed that 30 rain gauges will be installed at various spots in Alibaug, Karjat, Vasai, Virar, Ambarnath, Badlapur,  Pen , and Uran, among other places, while nine tidal gauges will be set up  in Vasai, Kalva, Kalyan, Panvel, Revas, and Kharpada, among other spots.

Running concomitant to this, the Rs 8 crore contour-mapping exercise through satellite, which began in August 2010, will end by March this year.

Post the July 2005 deluge and based on the recommendations of the state-appointed Chitale Commission, the MMRDA constituted a Hydrology Unit to assimilate information on the rain and tides that affect the city. "The results of the study will be used to prepare a comprehensive flood zone plan for MMR. The aim is to ensure minimal property damage and economic loss to the financial capital of India. It would be pertinent to note that the economic losses caused by the July 2005 floods was estimated at around Rs 500 crore. The exact human loss has not been ascertained till date," the official added.

MMRDA claims the Real Time Flood Forecast System will be complimentary to the doppler radar installed at Navy Nagar by the Indian Meteorological Department to read signs for rains or cyclones.

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